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  • June 08, 2021 12:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We love all our local businesses - and are looking for some extra love for our health and fitness businesses today. Our gym and fitness centers were hit hard by the pandemic and forced closures over the past year. The Federal Government recognized restaurants needed additional relief and quickly passed legislation to provide them additional support. Now there's a bill out there to do something similar for our gyms, but it needs your help to pass. Please spread the word and contact congress to urge their support of this effort today!


    Learn more and find easy links to contact your representatives at:

    https://www.ihrsa.org/federal/the-gym-mitigation-and-survival-act/



  • April 26, 2021 9:08 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    ECONOMIC INJURY DISASTOR LOAN (EIDL) UPDATE

    The Small Business Administration (SBA) began the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program at the start of the pandemic. The SBA announced they have increased the maximum amount small businesses and non-profit organizations can borrow through the program. The SBA has raised the loan limit from 6-months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $150,000 to up to 24-months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $500,000.

    If you’re a business that has received a loan at the current limits, you do not need to submit a request for an increase. The SBA will reach out to you via email to provide more details about how to request an increase. Any new loan applications submitted going forward will be automatically considered for the new loan parameters.

    You can apply for the EIDL program here, and you can email your questions to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov or call the the SBA at 1-800-659-2955.

    Also, effective immediately, applicants can send a request for reevaluation of a Targeted EIDL Advance application that was declined to the following email address: TargetedAdvanceReevaluation@sba.gov.

    Applicants should follow these instructions when requesting a reevaluation:

    • Send an email to TargetedAdvanceReevaluation@sba.gov
    • Use the subject line “Reevaluation Request for [insert your 10-digit application number]”
    • In the body of the email, include identifying information for the application such as application number, business name, business address, business owner name(s) and phone number
    • Important: Include an explanation and any documentation that addresses the reason for the decline, if available. SBA will contact applicants if additional documentation is required to complete the review.

    SAVE OUR STAGES

    Among the hardest hit small businesses throughout the pandemic have been live venues, performing arts organizations, museums, and movie theaters. The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant, otherwise known as the Save Our Stages Grant, is an SBA grant program that directly targets these businesses for relief. This program includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues. Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees.

    Unfortunately, the application portal had been temporarily suspended due to technical difficulties. I am pleased to announce that the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant application portal will reopen on April 24In the meantime, applicants can register for a new account here.

    RESTAURANT REVITALIZATION FUND (RRF)

    The RRF is designed to provide emergency assistance for eligible restaurants, bars, and other qualifying businesses. While the SBA is not yet accepting applications, you can prepare by reviewing the sample applicationprogram guide, and cross-program eligibility chart here. You will be able to apply through SBA-recognized Point of Sale Restaurant Partners or directly via SBA in a forthcoming online application portal. If you haven’t already, sign up for RRF email updates here.

    The official application launch date will be announced shortly. Ahead of the application launch, and over the next two weeks, the SBA will provide outreach and training on how to apply, application requirements and where to apply. 

    For the first 21 days that the program is open, the SBA will prioritize reviewing applications from small businesses owned by women, veterans, and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. Following the 21-day period, all eligible applicants are encouraged to submit applications. 

    STILL HAVE QUESTIONS?

    Because these programs are administered by SBA, they should be your first point of contact with questions or issues. You can reach the SBA by calling (612) 370-2324, emailing Minneapolis.mn@sba.gov, or by visiting their website. You can also reach out to your local Small Business Development Center for assistance. You can also find information on the House Committee on Small Business website, here.

    The SBA has launched a series of workshops to provide aspiring entrepreneurs with the information needed to ensure economic empowerment and business success. The next workshop is on April 28 at 10 a.m. CT and will cover how and where to find additional small business support resources. You can also attend a webinar on navigating today’s crises and disruption on Thursday April 29 at 11 a.m. CT.


  • March 12, 2021 1:15 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Governor Walz announced big “dial turns” this morning, loosening work from home requirements beginning April 15 as well as removing some restrictions March 15 as COVID cases continue to decline and more Minnesotans get vaccinated.

    Masking and Social Distancing Remains In Place

    Changes Beginning at NOON on March 15th:

    • Restaurants can go to 75% with bar seating allowed for groups of 4 
    • Gym capacity moved to 50%
    • Salon and Personal Services capacity limits are removed
    • Indoor events and entertainment can open at 50% capacity, with no more than 250 people.
    • Outdoor events and entertainment can open at 50% capacity, with no more than 250 people
    • Capacity limits on places of worship are lifted
    • Household gatherings of 50 permitted outdoors and 15 indoors with no limit on number of households 

    Changes Beginning on April 1st:

    • Indoor events and entertainment venues with occupant capacity greater than 500 may increase capacity per state guidelines
    • Outdoor events and entertainment venues with occupant capacity greater than 500 may increase capacity per state guidelines

    Changes Beginning on April 15th:

    • Workers may return to work in person, but remote work is still strongly encouraged

    Executive Order, 21-11

    Stay Safe Guidelines and Recommendations
    (scroll down for the useful grid)


  • February 18, 2021 4:38 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Today, Mayor Jacob Frey announced he will rescind the ban on seating at bar counters in Minneapolis businesses, effective immediately. The decision to remove the restrictions was based on public health data. Public health officials will continue to monitor COVID-19 data trends in the City.

    With the City regulation rescinded, businesses must follow requirements in the State Emergency Order 2021-01 for bar seating. Highlights include:

    • Reservations are required
    • No more than two customers may be seated together at a bar counter at any one time
    • Identify a specific location at the bar counter for customers to place orders
    • Physical distancing of 6 feet must be maintained between:
      • Customers in line to order at a bar counter, Customers ordering at a bar counter and customers seated at the bar counter, and Parties seated at a bar counter
      • There is to be no congregating at the bar counter
      • If customers pick up their order at a bar counter, they must return to their table or bar seating to eat or drink
    • Provide floor markings and signage at the designated bar counter service area
    • Increase the amount of fresh air circulating in the bar by opening fresh air intake dampers and keeping HVAC fans running to dilute and disperse air particles

    If you have any questions about the rule changes, or best practices, SWBA is here to help. Reach out to us and we can help you find the best solutions.


  • February 11, 2021 9:18 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Contact Your Council Member to Urge Support for Much Needed Police Recruit Classes:

    Tomorrow morning, Council will vote on whether to approve funding for recruitment classes in August and December that would add around 100 officers to the depleted Minneapolis Police Department. The MPD is currently understaffed and having difficulties addressing the issues in the city that do require police response. We are asking you to call or email your council member to urge support for the recruitment classes ahead of tomorrow's vote.

    Ward 13 - Linea Palmisano
    612-673-2213
    linea.palmisano@minneapolismn.gov

    Wart 10 - Lisa Bender
    612-673-2210
    lisa.bender@minneapolismn.gov

    Ward 11 - Jeremy Schroeder
    612-673-2211
    jeremy.schroeder@minneapolismn.gov

    Ward 8 - Andrea Jenkins
    612-673-2208
    andrea.jenkins@minneapolismn.gov

    Background Information:

    During the City of Minneapolis 2021 Budget process, the City Council approved a General Fund reduction of $6,427,000 from the Mayor's proposed budget of the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD).  The reduction is based on the budgeted cost for the Community Safety Officer program and the planned second and third recruit/cadet class for 2021. The reduction redirects funds to a Public Safety Staffing Reserve held within Finance and Property Services by the City's Chief Financial Officer. The City’s Police Chief can access the funds in the reserve by submitting a report to the appropriate City Council Committee detailing current staffing levels, future anticipated staffing needs, and the plan to deploy funds.  The aim of the staffing reserve is to ensure that recruitment and staffing strategies comport with broader City goals. It gives City Council the opportunity to ask questions of MPD and allows the Police Chief an opportunity to explain his hiring strategy for the Department.

    The MPD has seen a significant reduction in active law enforcement personnel in 2020/2021 due to higher than anticipated attrition and leaves resulting in difficulty in meeting the public safety needs of the City.  Budgetary constraints, the lengthy lead time needed for hiring and training new recruits, and recent crime trends have aggravated the situation. 

    The following activities will help meet the need for the additional deployment of law enforcement personnel.

    • Community Service Officers (CSO) work part-time for MPD while attending an accredited law enforcement program, or training/ for licensing requirements. Upon completion of the program and during the next academy opportunity, CSOs graduate into the MPD's Recruit Academy program. CSO classes most closely represent the Community, and play a multifaceted role in the MPD, assisting patrol officers in non-enforcement activities, responding to requests for service, maintaining department equipment, and assisting with traffic control (among other tasks). Between 1/2000 – present, 45.94% of CSOs identify as BIPOC, a significantly higher percent than other hiring classes.
    • The MPD has two Recruit classes and one Cadet class planned for 2021. MPD seeks to train a total of 104 new officers with these three classes in an effort to stabilize MPD’s sworn workforce and help meet the public safety needs of the City. The additional hiring classes will help ensure the Department’s ability to provide basic 911 service and to help replenish other units impacted by the unexpected attrition including Investigations.
  • February 02, 2021 1:25 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Along with the newly redesigned Experience Southwest website comes a new way to feature member businesses and grow our district marketing reach. Visitors can now sign up to receive email itineraries that put fun adventures together and send them on their way to see you! We'll be adding more adventures to the list throughout the year... and we're excited to feature you!

    Help us spread the word. Visit: https://www.experiencesouthwest.com/fun-itinerary-for-you/

  • February 01, 2021 1:55 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We're hearing about a number of overnight break-ins, including a couple this weekend. Suspects are gloved and covered, leaving little evidence to track them down. They seem to be going for cash drawers and a quick entry-exit. Leaving your registers visibly empty and/or a note near the door indicating that no cash is kept on-site overnight may be a good idea.

    Reducing crime in the area is one of our top priorities this year, and we need your help to put pressure on the city for improvements. Please provide information about incidents that have happened to you or near you so that we have a complete picture of what is happening in the district.

    Information you provide will be kept confidential, and will be used to discuss crime with Council Members, the 5th Precinct, and the Press in a multi-pronged advocacy effort to bring attention to and reduce the issues we are currently facing.

    Take the Survey Now (takes less than 5 minutes): https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/SWBACrimeUpdate


  • December 14, 2020 10:34 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Both the Minnesota and Federal legislatures are working on relief packages for businesses that may be passed as early as this week. Both aim to have aid available before the end of the year. SWBA is monitoring progress and will report on these as soon as possible. Here's to hoping that the vaccines that are making their way out this week are the light at the end of the tunnel and that we can return to a more normal level of community and business soon.

  • December 10, 2020 2:43 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Take survey by Dec. 18 on transforming community safety

    Provide your input on what community safety looks like and tell us your ideas about a new model of community safety for Minneapolis. You can take the survey in EnglishSpanishSomaliHmong or Oromo.

    The survey has been extended to Dec. 18 to hear from more voices for the first phase of survey results, which is planned to be presented to council in early January. Input provided after Dec. 18 will continue to be used for future engagement phases.

    In June 2020, the City Council pledged to create a new model of community safety. As part of that, the council committed to a yearlong process of community engagement. This survey is one of the first steps in that process. Through the survey, you can share your vision for a new community safety model. You can also provide ideas for how to accomplish that new model.

    Read more


  • December 08, 2020 1:46 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Domestic Security Shutters, SWS Security Roller Shutters & Grilles from Samson Doors UK

    Council finally passed the Exterior Shutter ordinance last week, officially allowing commercial properties to add exterior security shutters to their buildings if desired. The ordinance remained very simple, stipulating only that the shutters be retractable and remain open during business hours, and that no advertising may be placed on them. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to the association for clarifications.

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Southwest Business Association is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. Minnesota , P.O. Box 8932, Minneapolis, MN 55408

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